What are Bhastrika Pranayama and its benefits

A fast-paced breathing exercise that is helpful in many ways

A form of breathing exercise in yoga, Bhastrikā has been in use since ancient times. It is a crucial breath exercise in pranayama. The art of performing Bhastrika involves a rapid and forceful inhalation and exhalation, which draws its energy from the movement of the diaphragm. A unique factor of this Bhastrika Pranayama is that when one starts doing the rapid inhaling and exhaling of the breath, you will hear a hissing sound coming from your nose.

Coming from the Sanskrit word ‘bhastrika’, which means ‘bellows’ that is commonly used by blacksmiths to melt the metal. The bellows are to fan the fire for the melting. Similarly, performing bhastrika pranayama brings a great amount of air into the body, generating heat at both the mind and the body. The milder form of BhastrikāPrāṇāyāma is kapālabhāti.

How to perform BhastrikāPrāṇāyāma

Begin by sitting in a comfortable position and place your palms on your thighs. Now, take in a deep breath and breathe it out forcefully through the nostrils. Remember to not put any strain on your shoulders or stomach.

As soon as you breathe out, breathe in again with the same force. Repeat the inhaling and exhaling of breath with the same force using the diaphragmatic muscles. Try and observe the abdomen moving outwards during inhalation.

Also, Bhastrika Pranayama is to be practised on an empty stomach. And remember to do it at your own pace because one can often feel dizzy with the forceful inhalations and exhalations.

The various benefits ofBhastrikāPrāṇāyāma

It is said that when this pranayama is practised regularly, it helps remove blockages from the nose and chest. This is especially useful for asthmatic patients as it helps remove inflammation of the throat.

As per Hatha Yoga, BhastrikāPrāṇāyāma should be and when performed plentifully, helps in breaking the three psychic knots and awakens the Kundalini quickly.

Performing this breathing exercise brings a favourable effect on the respiratory and digestive systems. While it not only helps in draining the excess phlegm from the lungs, it is also helpful in increasing gastric fire. It also helps with the issues of sinus, bronchitis, and other respiratory problems.

BhastrikāPrāṇāyāma also helps maximize the lung capacity, remove toxins and impurities. Moreover, with the huge amount of oxygen flowing into the lungs, it also oxygenates the blood.

Nirtika Pandita

A follower of Master Oogway, living by his words of Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery and today is a gift, which is why it is called the ‘Present’, I am trying to master the art of now. Keeping that in the center I am combining my professional prowess as a writer and nerves of a gastronaut to conquer the Saha world.
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